It looks like Google isn't wasting any time laying down a support infrastructure for its new set-top box push. Just one day after the shiny new Nexus Player officially went on sale, the YouTube app for Android TV has been published in the Play Store to enable easy updates without a firmware upgrade. If you happen to be one of the few people with an ADT-1 developer unit from Google I/O or you got lucky with an early delivery of the Nexus Player, you should see the update automatically.
Over the next few weeks you're going to a see a lot of mainstream apps get quick (and possibly dirty) updates when the new Lollipop devices and software builds break some of their functionality. (No, we don't have any links to images yet.) Some of the first are HBO's streaming app HBO GO, and the same app for its sister network Cinemax, MAX GO. Both apps have been updated today to include "support for Android Lollipop."
The update text also says that the apps have added "higher resolution playback." That's all.
Update, December 16th: Google Play Store gift cards are now available in Ireland.
Good news, everyone! Well, not everyone - everyone who wants to buy Google Play Store credit in the form of gift cards, and currently lives in Ireland. Actually, let's be specific: in the Republic of Ireland, since the United Kingdom has had Google Play Gift Cards since last May, presumably including Northern Ireland. OK, so if you're somewhere between Donegal and Cork and/or Galway and Dublin, and you want to buy a Google Play Gift card, I've got good news.
There may not always be a power outlet nearby when you need one, so perhaps a giant external battery is something you should consider. In fact, there's a particularly massive battery from EC Technology on sale through Amazon right now. 22,400mAh of power for just $34.99.
This device is usually priced between $50 and $55, so this is a solid deal. It has two USB ports (up to 2.1A) and an LED flashlight for good measure.
No release of Android feels complete until it's sitting in AOSP. The time has come and Google is now uploading Lollipop to the Android Open Source Project. That's every line of code, every resource, and every config file – the result of a year of work by Google's crack team of developers. Given the likely size of this release and everything we've seen in the past, this code dump could take several hours to complete.
I'm not sure there's ever been a time I found myself needing access to Internet Explorer on Android, but now I'll be prepared if that ever does come up. Microsoft's new RemoteIE preview program lets you access a remote version of IE running in the cloud on almost any device. All you need is a Microsoft account and an app.
The Gmail 5.0 APK was, for many users, the sweetest thing they tasted on Halloween. But that release was just a very thorough preview, a test build that was essentially complete. Now Google is officially rolling the stable version of the app into the Play Store.
The changes here are predominantly bug fixes, but there is at least one user-facing tweak. Gmail has traditionally displayed an image in the background whenever you load up an empty folder.
While Google did skip October, platform version numbers are back, this time for November. Back in September we saw KitKat's gains continuing, and this month seems little different - in the two months since September, KitKat added another 5.7%, or about 2.8% per month. This is a slightly decline in pace, to be sure. In September, KitKat added 3.6% in a one-month timespan, so 7.2%+ would have been needed to maintain that pace.